Charlie's 80s Blog

This Day In 80s Music, January 20th

On this day in 1982: During an Ozzy Osbourne concert in Des Moines, Iowa, a member of the audience threw a bat onto the stage. Thinking it was a fake rubber bat, the singer picked it up and attempted to bite its head off. As he did this, Ozzy soon realized it wasn’t fake but in fact a real bat. After the show Ozzy was immediately rushed to the nearest hospital for rabies shots.

On this day in 1983: Def Leppard released their third studio album ‘Pyromania’ which featured new guitarist Phil Collen and was produced by Robert John “Mutt” Lange. The album has sold over 10 million copies in the U.S.

The album was a shift away from the band’s traditional heavy metal roots and toward more radio-friendly glam metal and hard rock sound, finding massive mainstream success. ‘Pyromania’ charted at #2 on the Billboard 200 album chart (kept from the top by Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’)

The album was partially recorded with original guitarist Pete Willis, whose rhythm guitar tracks appear on all songs. Toward the end of the recording sessions, Willis was fired for excessive alcohol abuse, and was replaced by guitarist Phil Collen, who contributed a few guitar solos as well as additional guitar parts that had not yet been recorded by Willis. On the original LP release, Willis is visible in the background of the photograph of lead singer Joe Elliot, while Collen is given his own personal photo as the new full-time member of the group.

With its melodic hooks and heavy MTV exposure, ‘Pyromania’ became a massive success, and was a major catalyst for the 1980s pop-metal movement. The album sold six million copies in the U.S. in its original release (about 100,000 copies per week for much of the year). It has since sold over ten million there and been certified diamond.

“Photograph”, “Rock of Ages” and “Foolin'” became top 40 singles on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S, with “Photograph” peaking at #13 and “Rock of Ages” at #16. “Photograph” (6 weeks) and “Rock of Ages” (1 week) both topped the Billboard Mainstream Rock Chart while “Foolin'” and “Too Late for Love” made the Top 10 on the Mainstream Rock Chart. “Comin’ Under Fire”, “Billy’s Got a Gun” and “Action! Not Words” made the top 40 of the Mainstream Rock Chart.

Here’s what was happening on the U.S. singles chart on this day back in 1983:

1 4 DOWN UNDER –•– Men At Work (Columbia)-11 (1 week at #1) (1)
2 2 THE GIRL IS MINE –•– Michael Jackson / Paul McCartney (Epic)-11 (2)
3 3 DIRTY LAUNDRY –•– Don Henley (Asylum)-12 (3)
4 1 MANEATER –•– Daryl Hall & John Oates (RCA)-14 (1)
5 5 SEXUAL HEALING –•– Marvin Gaye (Columbia)-12 (5)
6 6 MICKEY –•– Toni Basil (Chrysalis)-20 (1)
7 12 AFRICA –•– Toto (Columbia)-12 (7)
8 13 BABY, COME TO ME –•– Patti Austin with James Ingram (Qwest)-18 (8)
9 14 ROCK THE CASBAH –•– The Clash (Epic)-16 (9)
10 11 HEARTBREAKER –•– Dionne Warwick (Arista)-15 (10)

11 7 GLORIA –•– Laura Branigan (Atlantic)-28 (2)
12 15 YOU AND I –•– Eddie Rabbitt with Crystal Gayle (Elektra)-15 (12)
13 8 STEPPIN’ OUT –•– Joe Jackson (A&M)-22 (6)
14 16 THE OTHER GUY –•– Little River Band (Capitol)-9 (14)
15 17 YOU CAN’T HURRY LOVE –•– Phil Collins (Atlantic)-11 (15)
16 21 SHAME ON THE MOON –•– Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band (Capitol)-5 (16)
17 20 HEART TO HEART –•– Kenny Loggins (Columbia)-8 (17)
18 18 THE LOOK OF LOVE (Part 1) –•– ABC (Mercury)-19 (18)
19 22 GOODY TWO SHOES –•– Adam Ant (Epic)-10 (19)
20 23 HAND TO HOLD ON TO –•– John Cougar (Riva)-11 (20)


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